Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



All of My Friends

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Squeaks

Stringams. At Gramma's house.
My Gramma Stringam lived in a house in Lethbridge.
She and Grampa had built it and moved there when their older sons took over management of the ranch.
By the time I entered the world, they had lived in it a number of years.
And when I had reached an age to remember, it was already ‘seasoned’ and had received additions to the original structure.
It was a beautiful, comfortable home, with junipers growing on either side of the front door, stuffing one’s lungs with fragrance whenever one entered or exited into the wide hallway that ran from the front to the magical kitchen at the back.
To the left were the doorway to Gramma and Grampa’s room, the entrance to the upper staircase and the entrance to the laundry room and lower staircase. To the right were the double glass doors to the living room. Grampa’s recliner perched directly behind these doors in the corner. A long couch sat in front of the wide window beside his chair. Along the back wall was a white ‘fireplace’, a mirror and some book shelves.
On the opposite side of the room were some comfortable chairs and a ‘piecrust’ table with little figurines that little fingers itched to play with.
Ahem . . .
Also on that wall was the wide opening to the sunny dining room. Which contained a great sideboard that held dishes and linens. And, for those same little fingers, a drawer full of candy.
Don’t ask me how I know this . . .
The dining room was sandwiched between the great, sun-filled kitchen and the comfortable ‘sun room’ filled with books and chairs and . . . sunshine.
I loved this house. It was sparkling clean, warm, bright and welcoming. Endlessly filled with the fragrances of freshly baked bread and/or cookies and/or homemade soups and/or roasting meats.
But my reasons for describing all of this to you is because I wanted to talk about the floors.
Yes, it takes me a while.
The living room, in fact, most of the rooms, were floored in hardwood strips, polished and gleaming. Each room was additionally covered by a wide rug with reached very nearly to the edges. Only a brief, tantalizing glimpse of shining floorboards was visible near the walls.
One walked on woven carpets mostly.
But even as your stockinged feet tread along those carpets, you could hear the creak of the wooden floors beneath you.
I loved it.
It was the ‘sound’ of Gramma’s house that went along with the fragrance.
In our home, Husby replaced the carpets with hardwood flooring many years ago. They have now developed squeaks.
And whenever I hear one, I am again that little girl, happily crossing the living room at Gramma’s house.
The piecrust table and its prohibited, fragile residents are there, just within reach. The candy cupboard sits in the sunshine a few feet away.
And Gramma and Aunt Emily are in the kitchen, where, shortly something delicious will emerge.
All recalled with the single squeak of a hardwood floor.

11 comments:

  1. I didn't grow up with hardwood squeaks so I have to use my imagination here; thankfully you've created an excellent picture for me to draw upon! I do remember a "piecrust" table like you described, though :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, as long as you remember the 'piecrust'! :)

      Delete
  2. And I left an answer for your question on my blog, Diane! It's the only thing I could come up with. It is surprising which posts bring the most comments and the most views. They are not always the ones I might want or expect :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Well you've certainly got me looking at squeaks differently. I always thought they meant a serial killer had broken into the house . . .

    ReplyDelete
  4. The sounds of the house talking to you....telling you stories of its history...reminding you that now YOU are a part of its history. So lovely.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I love stories of yesteryear, it creates a lovely arm feeling in my heart.
    I have floorboards covered by broadsheet vinyl, wall to wall. Sometimes the bedroom boards creak, sometimes the kitchen boards creak. It seems to depend on the weather.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Same here. When the weather is cold and dry, the boards shrink. More squeaks. But as soon as it warms up, they swell and the squeaking stops.

      Delete

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